Orlando Gay Chorus launches Voices United! Orlando youth camp

By : Billy Manes
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ORLANDO – For one week, everyone was a star, or at least a star in the making.

In an unexpected move, the Orlando Gay Chorus—with help from a grant from Disney—launched a chorus camp called Voices United! Orlando, a choir camp intended to raise voices to their perfect pitch, all while having fun. From June 5-9, 22 kids of middle-school age came together for a week of bass and treble, alto and soprano, all leading to a final performance that Friday.

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Wet Hot Gay Summer! Orlando’s big gay weekend succeeds despite the weather and a year of mourning

By : Billy Manes
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ORLANDO – It was the best of times, it was the wettest of times.

Whether it was a pool party or a thunderstorm, the underlying theme beneath the gray skies of Orlando’s resort area in its big gay weekend occupying June’s first week was one of water falling, often with thunder and lightning included.

For 27 years, GayDayS Inc., One Magical Weekend and Girls in Wonderland have been tourism drivers for the area, growing from simple notions of red shirts at theme parks all the way to huge circuit parties and even bigger profits. In economic development parlance, the annual June event brings hundreds of millions of dollars to the region.

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Disney was seeing red at the annual Gay Day at the Magic Kingdom

By : Jeremy Williams
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A sea of red washed over the Magic Kingdom for the annual Gay Day at the Walt Disney World park June 3.

Whether making a political statement or showing their Disney love, the red t-shirts were as much an event as Space Mountain and the Country Bear Jamboree. 

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One Magical Weekend’s signature event RipTide makes a big splash

By : Jeremy Williams
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One Magical Weekend’s RipTide, the weekend’s longest running party during Orlando’s big LGBTQ week, at Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon was the place to be June 2.

The people packed the 52-acre waterpark to dance, meet up with old friends, make some new ones and ride some of the most thrilling waterslides in Orlando.

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Get ready to soak up the fun for one of the planet’s biggest LGBTQ celebrations

By : Jeremy Williams
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What started out nearly three decades ago as a day at Disney’s Magic Kingdom for LGBTQ families has turned into one of the largest, and most lucrative, LGBTQ events in the world.

The first week of June in Central Florida brings over 150,000 LGBTQ people from across the globe to the state and generates millions of dollars every year for the local economy, and this year is without exception.

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The Other Side of Life: Totem polls

By : Jason Leclerc
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Jason Leclerc

Who might have imagined that the irrelevance of Hollywood would become a totem to the nation writ large in the age of Trump? When I say totem, of course, I intend to conjure images of poles: the biggest poles, polls that now accurately misstate everything from presidential popularity to Academy Award winners.

We are pole-driven, metaphor-driven partisans who have bought into cults of personality if only for the fleeting moments needed to crush other cults. In 2017, we pit irrelevant reality stars against their replacements as if one were the President of the United States and the other were the former governor of California.

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‘Beauty and the Beast’ roars with monstrous $170M debut

By : Wire Report
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NEW YORK (AP) — Disney’s live-action “Beauty” was a beast at the box office, opening with an estimated $170 million in North American ticket sales and setting a new high mark for family movies.

“Beauty and the Beast” blew past the previous record-holder for G- or PG-rated releases, according to studio estimates Sunday. Last year, Disney’s “Finding Dory” debuted with a then-PG-best $135 million.

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Russia gives “Beauty and the Beast” equivalent of R-rating due to gay character

By : Wire Report
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MOSCOW (AP) – Children under age 16 won’t be able to go to the new Disney film “Beauty and the Beast” in Russia because it includes a gay character, the Russian Culture Ministry said Tuesday.

The ministry told The Associated Press in an emailed statement that its decision for the 16-plus rating followed petitions by lawmaker Vitaly Milonov, known for his ultraconservative views, petitioned for the live-action film to be banned.

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Gay moment nixes ‘Beauty and the Beast’ at Alabama drive-in

By : Wire Report
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HENAGAR, Ala. (AP) – An Alabama drive-in theater won’t show a new re-telling of the classic fairy tale “Beauty and the Beast” because one of its characters is portrayed as homosexual.

A Facebook post for the Henagar Drive-In Theatre says its operators are “first and foremost Christians” and will not compromise on what the Bible teaches. They said they will show family-oriented films so customers can “watch wholesome movies.”

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‘Beauty and The Beast’ will feature Disney’s first gay character

By : Jeremy Williams
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Disney continues its trend of converting their arsenal of animated classics into live-action movies with the release of Beauty and the Beast March 17, but this transfer to the three-dimensional world features something not found in the original: Disney’s first gay character.

In an interview with Attitude magazine, the film’s director Bill Condon mentions the character of LeFou, sidekick to the main villain Gaston and played by Josh Gad, as part of a subplot that touches on sexuality.

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Screened Out – Disney’s Moana

By : Stephen Miller
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Voices of Dwayne Johnson, Auli’i Cravalho, Jermaine Clemente, Nicole Scherzinger

Pacific Islander folklore meets Broadway-style tunes and 3D computer animation – could it possibly work? Yes, it can!

Disney does what they do best, breaking ground and making merchandise. But this time, a plucky heroine and a goofy demigod challenge the typical template. And then great vocal talent, snappy tunes, and scene after scene of absolutely breathtaking scenery bring Moana to life.

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Screened Out – The Secret Life of Pets

By : Stephen Miller
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Voices of Louis CK, Kevin Hart, Eric Stonestreet, Jennie Slate, Ellie Kemper, Albert Brooks

Pet lovers are often animation lovers, too, I know, looking to our animals for wildly, colorful entertainment – like living cartoons. We search online for videos of puppies who act like goofballs or kittens who don’t quite make the jump. The Secret Life of Pets taps into that great slapstick so many of us love.

It is a good thing the characters – as shallow as they are – and the shtick liven things up. The story in Pets is really a retelling of the first Toy Story, where the established dog/toy gets displaced by the new dog/toy. A rivalry ensues that takes both of these enemies far outside, far from their comfort zones, and then they must band together to survive the cruel out-of-doors and find their ways back home.

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